Friday, August 10, 2007

The Feast of St. Lawrence

2 Cor 9:6-10
Jn 12:24-26

The example had been set. The example of self-emptying love, a love so self-emptying that he would die for his friends, for us. The example was set defining the life of service that is diaconal ministry. Jesus gave us this perfect example of diakonia. Some 250 years later, Lawrence followed that example, to the point of surrendering his life, an example himself of the self-giving that should be the hallmark of the service of the deacon. Yes, much of the story of Lawrence is legend, but that doesn't mean it isn't true. It carries a great truth, a truth about service, about love of God and man, a great truth about being a deacon. The story was preserved for a reason. It shows us the call that the deacon has to be self-sacrificing, to live a life of kenotic, self-emptying love. I doubt that many of us will be called upon to live our ministry out to this full measure. Yet we are called to empty ourselves for the sake of Christ. In honesty I must admit that I too often fail to be as self-emptying as I should, and I would surmise that I am not alone. Kenosis, self-emptying, is what we are called to. The example is there, it can be done. the example is there in Jesus, mirrored in Lawrence, and in many others. As we work to be examples of kenotic love, let us keep our focus on these examples. St. Lawrence, Deacon and Martyr, pray for us!
Deacon John
The Feast of St. Lawrence
Aug. 10, 2007